When considering how green initiatives meld with the "hypersonic" pace of digital growth, a one-dimensional analysis is misleading. We must consider the carbon offset factor; replacing the obsolete with the modern can be more energy-saving than spending.
If we listen to alarmists, the energy needs of the digital revolution will someday overtake humanity's capacity for energy production. For example, it's estimated that, in 2020, the amount of power consumed by cloud data centers like AWS, Azure, Rackspace, etc., will have met or exceeded the energy consumed by 67 million homes.
That sounds ominous, but before you grab the pitchfork and torches and storm the local server farm, consider this: those cloud data centers are replacing hundreds of thousands of energy-wasting on-premise servers.
At first glance, some trends do not seem compatible with "greenness," but a bigger-picture view shows otherwise:
IT leasing offers an enterprise the opportunity to always have the latest, most advanced and most sustainable equipment. No one can afford to swap out hardware at the drop of a hat; it's done only when absolutely necessary and usually after equipment has been outdated for some time.
With IT leasing, the lease terms can be written to conform with the expected life of the equipment, so the obsolescence, or waste factor, never rears its ugly head. In addition, the emphasis can be put on equipment with the highest Energy Star ratings, which factor in the eco-friendly nature of the hardware materials and their recyclability.
Your old IT gear might not serve your business as well as it used to, but that doesn’t mean it’s not valuable to someone else. Once your old IT equipment is sold, you’ll receive a cash payment or a significant discount from the supplier of your replacement equipment.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 became the year of the remote employee. By allowing work-from-home, the growth of the rush-hour commute should moderate, or even lessen. In areas where there is not adequate suburb-to-city-center mass transportation, which is the great majority of cities, this will have a tremendous positive impact on air quality and fuel consumption.
None of this would be possible without the technological advancements available to businesses today. It would be difficult, if not impossible, to support a work-at-home environment without virtual accessibility solutions like texting, videoconferencing and device-to-device chat applications, as well as remote IT and security services.
The same applications that make working from home possible also make staying at home better. Zoom calls with family and e-commerce functionality enable social and consumer interaction. And instead of jumping on a plane or hopping into a car to get to that sales call or budget meeting, we can do these over a laptop connection while sitting at home by the pool.
In the IT industry, programmers, systems integrators and developers are perfectly suited to work remotely. Because of task logging and project tracking applications, groups of developers can collaborate without ever seeing each other in person. Plus, they can work longer hours, and on weekends and holidays, if they so choose or if a deadline demands it.
This list could go on. Technology has made it possible to work without leaving your home, shop for a new hot tub while lounging in your old one and maximize your car’s mileage, just to name a few of its benefits.
As mentioned, state-of-the-art virtual machines will replace countless inefficient ones. The benefits of moving computing to the cloud will eventually provide economies of scale that will reduce the overall energy footprint of IT. In addition, data centers are at the forefront of sustainable energy development.
In fact, the largest data center in the United States is a zero-emission facility. The Switch Campus in Las Vegas, at 3.5 million square feet, is 100% powered by renewable energy. The energy savings compared to the equipment it will replace is enormous.
There’s an enormous amount of prestige to be earned through demonstrating green credentials. By taking part in this type of carbon offsetting initiative, you can boost your brand within your industry — and among your customers.
Today's smart building technologies can control virtually any part of a building's infrastructure to ensure optimal energy usage. Some utilities will even subsidize building owners to install intelligent heating, lighting, cooling and more to avoid overloading the power grid.
Further, artificial intelligence (AI) building automation is not limited to commercial properties. Homeowners can also benefit from “smart home” technologies, which can monitor and manage
There is no downside to IT becoming and promoting sustainability, whether from an environmental, social or financial perspective. In some views, it should be a major focus for tech. Sustainability initiatives drive innovation, and innovation is the heart of IT.
But making the IT industry more sustainable is only one piece of the puzzle. The progress IT makes toward going green will be passed on to other industries and to society at large, which is exactly what our planet needs to survive and thrive.
At CHG-MERIDIAN, we realize that only sustainable business models can succeed in the long term. This means moving away from a linear economic model where products are manufactured, used and then disposed of, and transitioning toward a circular model that focuses on repair and reuse. We regard end-to-end lifecycle management as one of the biggest challenges of our time, and that’s why it is the core discipline of our company.
The old methods of IT asset management are becoming increasingly costly — both financially and environmentally. When you buy IT assets, they start to depreciate from day one. And with each extra day that passes, those assets become a little more obsolete. Eventually, you need to buy replacements and ensure outgoing assets are sanitized and disposed of safely.
CHG-MERIDIAN takes an altogether fresh approach. Efficient Technology Management® is the new approach to IT asset management that allows businesses like yours to stay ahead of the technology curve while offsetting carbon footprints.